Stiles "filthy" as Reds finals hopes vanquished

Super Rugby
by Sam Phillips

Nick Stiles summed up his feelings towards last night's Reds performance with one word - filthy.

It sounds cliche but the Reds simply did not front up at Suncorp Stadium last night.

They defended well in the opening passage of play, turned the ball over, scored down the other end and then clicked into cruise control for the remaining 75 minutes.

Against a Force team fighting for both Super Rugby survival and the chance to play finals football, it was never going to be enough to get the job done.

"I'm filthy mate, it's as simple as that," he said.

"We can't sustain 80 minutes of football.


"We're happy to do things in spurts and patches and that doesn't win you football games.

"You have to have a desire to compete for 80 minutes and be ruthless for 80 minutes.

"Doing things for little bits of games doesn't win you football matches."

Stiles gave his troops a "massive spray" at half time after taking a 13-5 deficit into the break and his side responded.

But after the forward pack drove Stephen Moore over for his second rolling maul try, the team switched off again and did not register another point.

"It was a lack of effort for 80 minutes," Stiles said.Quade Cooper and the Reds were well below their best last night. Photo: Getty Images"We got to a point in the second half where we got to the lead but then we feel content and we go into our shells again.

"Playing the second half with 14 men for 20 minutes is once again, unacceptable.

"You put pressure on yourself by doing that and it just hurts."

The baffling part of Queensland's season is that they are able to put together some of the best rugby any Australian side has produced but it has always been in patches.

They came within one minute of beating the undefeated Crusaders and went with the Hurricanes for 60 minutes.

There were no signs of any complacency at training this week - which was particularly intense on Monday and Tuesday.

But none of that seems to have transferred to last night's performance, when their season was on the line.

"We trained with absolute intensity on Monday and Tuesday but as Higgers mentioned to the boys in the change rooms - you can't be happy with training.

"Training hard puts you in a position to perform but it's what you do when you run on at kick off time that actually counts."

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